The sun never did peek through the clouds on a rainy senior day in Tallahassee. Burt Reynolds planted the spear at midfield, the military was honored, and president Thrasher spoke of a community of unity following the tragic school shooting Thursday.
Oh, and there was an important football game. Florida State, in front of about 70,000 (announced sellout of 82,300), won its 27th consecutive game, beating the Boston College Eagles 20-17, overcoming six drops and numerous missed tackles. FSU has still never lost a division home game under Jimbo Fisher. FSU is now 11-0.
Florida State opened with a 14-play, 75-yard scoring drive, that featured eight runs and six passes, capped by a Karlos Williams touchdown run. The Eagles marched back down the field with a 14-play, 50-yard field goal drive, that ate 8:16 off the clock. Both teams were running very well early on, and with passes not hitting the ground, the clock ran and ran.
Yes, each team had only one drive in the first quarter. This meant the broadcast was so behind in running commercials, it had to take a TV timeout after the field goal, a timeout after the ensuing kickoff, and a timeout after the end of the quarter, which came just 14 seconds later.
The break allowed for parents in the stands to relive great movie moments of Burt Reynolds' career, as the Florida State football alumnus, and former roommate of Lee Corso, planted the spear at midfield.
FSU settled for a field goal on their next drive, marching 56 yards on 11 plays in 4:35, after a dropped touchdown pass by Rashad Greene on a beautiful throw from Jameis Winston. A high and hard snap from center Cam Erving squirted through the hands of Winston, effectively killing the drive.
Boston College's second drive started well, with a nine yard run on first down, but Eddie Goldman blew up the run on second down, and Chris Casher stayed home to bat down the third down throw, forcing the punt.
The ensuing drive for the Seminoles was promising, but ended when Rashad Greene had a ball go off his hands and into the waiting arms of a Boston College defender. Jimbo Fisher was all over the officials over the missed pass interference call.
After the turnover, BC scored on a 67 yard, five-play drive, culminating with a 49-yard touchdown pass from Murphy to Shakim Phillips, as safety Jalen Ramsey slipped on the wet field.
FSU answered immediately, however, marching 75 yards on seven plays for the score, as Jameis Winston hit Nick O'Leary for a 30-yard score over the middle, continuing to attack the middle of the Boston College defense. On the drive, Rashad Greene was hit and left the field with an apparent right arm injury. He returned to the game a bit later.
The Seminoles took a 17-10 lead into the half.
Winston was tremendous in the first half, going 14-20 for 193 yards, with a touchdown and an interception. Four of the incompletions were decidedly not his fault, due to drops.
FSU was 5-6 in the first half on third down, and outgained the Eagles 6.5 to 5.9 on a yards-per-play basis.
The second half started slowly for both sides, as the teams traded punts on drives stalled by penalty.
Boston College got on track, however, with a 21-yard QB keeper by Murphy, capping a 63-yard drive. Roberto Aguayo missed a 40 yard field goal on a resulting drive, only the third missed kick of his career, and his first at home. The missed kick gave the Eagles an opportunity to take their first lead.
However, Florida State's defense stiffened a bit and got the ball back to the offense. The Noles couldn't do anything with the drive, though, as a holding penalty backed FSU up, and drops by Wilson and Lane, the fifth and sixth of the day, forced a Cason Beatty punt.
Boston College's next drive lasted 8:52, and covered 67 yards on 17 plays, reaching Florida State's 25 yard line, but the defense, after allowing four third-down conversions on the march, stiffened and Alex Howell missed a 42 yard field goal on fourth down.
With 4:37 remaining in regulation, FSU's offense took over on its own 26. The Seminoles marched 66 yards on 12 plays, and Roberto Aguayo split the uprights on a 26-yard field goal, preserving hopes for another perfect season.